HOUSTON, Aug. 31 /PRNewswire/ -- Gryphon Exploration Company announced today the sale of 100% of its common stock to Woodside Energy (USA), a wholly owned subsidiary of Australia-based Woodside Petroleum Ltd. The total enterprise value was approximately $297 million. Gryphon, a Houston-based exploration and production company, has 72 BCFE of proven oil and gas reserves and 114 BCFE of proven plus probable oil and gas reserves, as independently evaluated by Ryder Scott Company, the Houston- based petroleum consultants, as of June 30, 2005. Gryphon's oil and gas reserves are located in the Gulf of Mexico and are 86% natural gas. Additionally, Gryphon has licensed approximately 2,300 offshore blocks (19,350 square miles) of highly contiguous 3-D pre-stack time-migrated seismic data. Gryphon also owns interests in 118 leases totaling more than 400,000 gross acres (300,000 net acres) with 80 prospects identifying 2.5 TCFE of potential. The company currently has four exploration wells in progress. Production as of June 30 was approximately 30 MMCFEPD. "Gryphon's successful track record and accomplishments are a result of the combination of the commitment of our investors, Warburg Pincus and Cheniere, and the hard work and professional performance of Gryphon's employees," said Michael Harvey, President and Chief Executive Officer of Gryphon Exploration Company. "Woodside is acquiring reserves, production and multiple prospects. More importantly, they are gaining the experienced professional staff and the sprit of performance of Gryphon's people." Gryphon was formed in October of 2000 through equity investments made by Warburg Pincus, Cheniere Energy and Gryphon's Management Team. The company's strategy since inception, is to use a focused, regional approach to exploration in the shallow waters of the Gulf of Mexico. "Michael and his team have done a wonderful job building Gryphon over the past five years. Gryphon has a terrific track record of finding hydrocarbons and attractive finding and development costs in various industry environments. Woodside is acquiring a good set of assets and a strong team upon which to continue to build its presence in the Gulf of Mexico," said Peter Kagan, a Managing Director at Warburg Pincus. The transaction closed on August 31, 2005. About Warburg Pincus Warburg Pincus has been a leading private equity investor since 1971. The firm currently has approximately $12 billion under management and an additional $8.5 billion available for investments in a range of sectors, including energy, information and communication technology, financial services, healthcare, industrial, media and business services and real estate. The firm has provided equity to finance energy companies since the late 1980s, including exploration and production, midstream, energy technologies, independent power, oilfield services, and international energy. Warburg Pincus has invested $1.5 billion in over 20 energy companies, including Antero Resources, Bill Barrett Corporation, Encore Acquisition Company, emgs (ElectroMagnetic GeoServices AS), Gryphon Exploration, Kosmos Energy, Lariat Petroleum, Latigo Petroleum, J. Makowski, MEG Energy, Newfield Exploration, Spinnaker Exploration and Targa Resources. An experienced partner to entrepreneurs seeking to create and build durable companies with sustainable value, the firm has offices in North America, Europe and Asia and an active portfolio of more than 100 companies. For more information, please visit http://www.warburgpincus.com.
SOURCE Gryphon Exploration Company